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For four days each June, Acton University brings together nearly 800 people to explore the intellectual foundations of a free society. This year, we’re opening up each evening’s dinner and plenary session for those who cannot attend the full conference!

Purchase single tickets for one evening or all four. This year, we are offering a Plenary Dinner Pass. Plenary passholders will have access to all four plenary dinners at a discounted rate. 

Hit the Register Now button to purchase tickets for any of the evening plenary sessions!

Register Now

Click on a night for more information:

Monday Night | June 24 - Dr. John Tomasi

Tuesday Night | June 25 - Umi Waheeda

Wednesday Night | June 26 - Dr. Anthony Bradley

Thursday Night | June 27 - Rob and Berni Neal


Interested in attending more of Acton University? Check out our Day Passes which include all daytime lecture sessions, breakfast, lunch, dinner, and the evening lecture. You can register for day passes here.



Monday Night Plenary

Dr. John Tomasi is the president of Heterodox Academy.

Dr. John Tomasi
Dr. John Tomasi
Heterodox Academy


John Tomasi is a political philosopher who earned his graduate degrees at Oxford University. He has held teaching and research positions at Princeton, Stanford and Harvard Universities. Tomasi was for many years the Romeo Elton 1843 Professor of Natural Theology at Brown University. In January of 2022, Tomasi left his (comfortable!) chair at Brown to become the first President of Heterodox Academy in NYC.

Heterodox Academy is a non-partisan, non-profit organization of 6000+ university professors and administrators who love their universities, and try to help them to live up to the ideals of open inquiry, viewpoint diversity, and constructive disagreement.

Tuesday Night Plenary

Umi Waheeda is a Co-Founder, Educator, and Social Entrepreneur at the Al Ashriyyah Nurul Iman Islamic Boarding School in Indonesia.

Umi Waheeda
Umi Waheeda
Al Ashriyyah Nurul Iman Islamic Boarding School

Co-Founder, Educator, and Social Entrepreneur

Umi Waheeda bt H. Abdul Rahman is the Co-founder of Al Ashriyyah Nurul Iman Islamic Boarding School in Indonesia. Umi and her late husband founded the school in 1998. Al Ashriyyah Nurul Iman Islamic Boarding School provides over 15,000 children with free education, accommodation, and health services. The school is entirely self-sustainable through student entrepreneurship. The school has a bakery, recycling center, and even a hair salon that is run by students, allowing them to learn through personal experience.

Wednesday Night Plenary

Dr. Anthony Bradley is Distinguished Research Fellow at the Acton Institute.

Dr. Anthony Bradley
Dr. Anthony Bradley
Acton Institute

Distinguished Research Fellow

Dr. Anthony Bradley is Distinguished Research Fellow at the Acton Institute, having previously served as an affiliate scholar and research fellow with Acton since 2002. Prior to joining Acton full time, Dr. Bradley was Professor of Religious Studies at The King's College in New York City where he also served as director for the Center for the Study of Human Flourishing. 

Dr. Bradley holds Bachelor of Science in biological sciences from Clemson University, a Master of Divinity from Covenant Theological Seminary, a Masters in Ethics and Society from Fordham University, and a Doctor of Philosophy degree from Westminster Theological Seminary. As a research fellow, Dr. Bradley lectures at colleges, universities, business organizations, conferences, and churches throughout the U.S. and abroad.

His writings on religious and cultural issues have been published in a variety of journals, including: the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Washington Examiner, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Detroit News, Christianity Today, and World Magazine. Dr. Bradley is called upon by members of the broadcast media for comment on current issues and has appeared on NPR, CNN/Headline News, and Fox News, among others.

He studies and writes on issues of race in America, mass incarceration and overcriminalization, youth and family, welfare, education, and ethics. His dissertation explores the intersection of black liberation theology and economics. From 2005-2009, Dr. Bradley was Assistant Professor of Systematic Theology and Ethics at Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis, MO where he also directed the Francis A. Schaeffer Institute.

Dr. Bradley is the author of several books including The Political Economy of Liberation: Thomas Sowell and James Cone on the Black Experience, Black and Tired: Essays on Race, Politics, Culture, and International Development, Liberating Black Theology: The Bible and the Black Experience in America, Ending Overcriminalization and Mass Incarceration, and co-editor of John Rawls and Christian Social Engagement: Justice As Unfairness.

Thursday Night Plenary

Rob and Berni Neal are the co-founders of the RBN foundation.

Rob and Berni Neal
Rob and Berni Neal
RBN Foundation


Mr. Robert Neal
Rob is a managing partner with Hager Pacific Properties and oversees the firm’s acquisitions and dispositions. He is also an active community member and holds or has held board positions with the Catholic University of America; Catholic Relief Services; The Papal Foundation; The Becket Fund; Catholic Leadership Institute; The Boy Scouts of America (Orange County); Second Harvest Food Bank, and Christ Cathedral Catholic Corporation.

Mrs. Bernarda 'Berni' A. Neal
After a professional career in corporate marketing and advertising, Mrs. Neal now dedicates her time to Catholic evangelization and philanthropy.  Mrs. Neal currently serves on the boards of ENDOW, EWTN, Legatus, Live Action, and Thomas Aquinas College.  Rob and Berni have partnered with the Knights of Columbus to establish a public foundation focused on K-12 education. Her board service on Catholic Leadership Institute, Magnificat Foundation, and Pueri Cantores will come to an end in the 2024 calendar year. Together with her husband Rob, she is a member of the Papal Foundation and the Legatus Orange County Chapter.  They have been married for 40 years and reside in Newport Beach.  They are the parents of two adult children and grandparents to far. 

Event Details

Start Date

End Date


DeVos Place
303 Monroe Avenue NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
United States


5:00pm Reception

6:00pm Dinner

7:00pm Evening Plenary

8:00pm Hospitality


$100 per person per night

Plenary Dinner Pass - $300 per person for all four nights


Paid Parking lots are available nearby.

The closest parking garages are located in DeVos Place off of Lyon Street, and City Hall/Calder Plaza off of Monroe Avenue.